bents in wind

Recumbents and all feet forward machines

bents in wind

Postby DaveW » Thu Nov 13, 2008 10:26 pm

Particularly cross-winds.

I know that they cut a smaller cross-section in headwinds, and are therefore easier to push into the wind, but as I ahve read people here say that there is less "body action" involved in balancing a bent, how do they go in blustery crosswinds?

I ride along the Kwinana freeway and am wondering about the winds blowing across Melville waters as on my current bike I am at times noticably leaning into the side wind.
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by BNA » Fri Nov 14, 2008 1:01 am

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Postby Kalgrm » Fri Nov 14, 2008 1:01 am

G'day Dave,

They go fine. When you're riding across a wind, your forward motion makes the wind feel like a head-wind to some extent, so that component of the wind vector is reduced as per normal on a bent. The sideways component still hits you, but you adjust as you would when seated on a conventional bike, by minor adjustments in steering.

I usually run a "spoke fairing" on the rear wheel of my 'bent, which greatly increases the side profile on which the wind may act. I don't have any problems riding along the Kwinana bike path with a blustery Doctor in full swing. I also lean sideways, but what can ya do? I just get out of that wind sooner than you might. :)

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Postby Joeblake » Fri Nov 14, 2008 9:54 am

I've never found too many problems with cross-winds, even going down Kwinana.

With the trike obviously there's no problem, but on my short wheel base bike, because there's a slight degree "flicking" from side to side with each pedal stroke, which tends to nullify the effects of cross wind, I'm always adjusting my balance anyway.

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Postby just4tehhalibut » Fri Nov 14, 2008 12:49 pm

It depends on what bent you ride, in as far as aerodynamics. On the SWB I have been buffeted along the bits after the Narrows Bridge and after Como Jetty, on the trike not so. On the lowracer I get slowed down but this is only because I have to keep carefully passing other cyclists wandering about the lane in blustery peak hour cyclepath conditions.

That bit after the Narrows remains but the bit after Como Jetty has largely had its teeth pulled out with the seawall being placed there to protect the adjacent freeway from wave action, spray and dead jellyfish. If your bent is slight lower than most DFs then you should find that you tuck in under the profile of that seawall and get a wind barrier. The only downside is that you now may not see the dolphins swimming within a dozen feet of the cyclepath.

I remember that before this seawall was built we had a woman cycle into work one day who complained about being hit in the face by a dead, windblown jellyfish. We also often, in the big winter storms, would arrive at work with the east side of our clothes dry, the west side wet and coated in grit, thoroughly sand-blasted. So buffeting isn't all the joy out there.
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Postby Joeblake » Fri Nov 14, 2008 12:51 pm

just4tehhalibut wrote:
I remember that before this seawall was built we had a woman cycle into work one day who complained about being hit in the face by a dead, windblown jellyfish.


What flavour? I like lime.

:lol:

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Postby Kalgrm » Fri Nov 14, 2008 1:18 pm

:lol: :lol: :lol:
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Postby DaveW » Fri Nov 14, 2008 1:37 pm

Thanks guys - I figured it would not really be a problem but since it is on my mind right now, I thought I would ask. :wink:
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Postby just4tehhalibut » Fri Nov 14, 2008 4:19 pm

Joeblake wrote:
just4tehhalibut wrote:
I remember that before this seawall was built we had a woman cycle into work one day who complained about being hit in the face by a dead, windblown jellyfish.


What flavour? I like lime.

:lol:

Joe


Good old Aeroplane Jelly-fish. From the woman's demeanor for the rest of the day it must have been Raspberry.
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Postby Joeblake » Fri Nov 14, 2008 4:21 pm

just4tehhalibut wrote:Good old Aeroplane Jelly-fish. From the woman's demeanor for the rest of the day it must have been Raspberry.


Or perhaps lemon?

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Postby Freddyflatfoot » Fri Nov 14, 2008 7:12 pm

Not sure how strong the winds are you are talking about, but I have ridden my SWB in open country, with a fairly strong crosswind, in excess of 65kph.
This did blow me around, a bit, and found myself being buffeted to the extent that I had to slow down, especially everytime a strong gust threatened to dump on the side of the road!
But I stayed upright, so I guess that's a plus.
So I guess the real question is, how strong a wind are you talking about?
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Postby bradwoodbr » Fri Nov 14, 2008 11:50 pm

When riding my M5 Shockproof recumbent along the Kwinana freeway cycle path, the amount of side wind effect is minimal. I think the side aero profile is lower and more aerodynamic than an upright bike. I agree with Graeme etal that the side wind becomes more of a headwind and the buffeting is minimal.
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Postby raptordesigns » Sat Nov 15, 2008 3:19 pm

I've not had any problem in fairly strong crosswinds on my quasi-lowracer even with the rear fairing installed.

But with a front spoke cover it's a different story. I tried it on my SWB, and strong crosswinds suddenly became terrifying. I've never put it back on.
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Postby DaveW » Sat Nov 15, 2008 10:57 pm

For the uninitiated - Melville waters is a large area of the Swan river - very wide - more like a lake than a river at that point.
And it is on the ocean side of the bike path - so we get the Fremantle Doctor sea breeze blowing right across Melville waters and accross the path.

Since the prevailing wind is normally a SWer that means teh wind comes from three quarters ahead for my commute home.

Add to this that it is often a bit blustery and it give reason to be cautious.

There have been days where I felt quite "uncertain" on my DF, and had to work hard to keep on the path, but only a few - most often it is just ahrd work - obviously would be far easier on a bent.

It is just those occasional blustery side winds that had me wondering.

But apart from the fact that I wont add a front spoke cover :) it appears that with a little practice it would worry me no more than it has with my DF.
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